Khanh the Killjoy

Khanh and the universal middle finger

Anna and the French Kiss  - Stephanie Perkins
“I cheated on her every day. In my mind, I thought of you in ways I shouldn’t have, again and again. She was nothing compared to you. I’ve never felt this way about anybody before—”

What's the saying? Once a cheater, always a cheater? Oh, the fucking hypocrisy.

There were many things I wanted to do to Anna Oliphant throughout this book. Some of them involve a bottle of choloroform, a shovel, and an unmarked grave. Mostly, I just want to bring Anna in front of the US Congress as an example of how the US educational system has grievously failed our students. To be frank, Anna Oliphant is a motherfucking idiot.

Yeah, I guess you could say this is a sweet romance, but it's not the good sort of sweet. It's the "Oh my god, why did I eat that entire package of Oreos? I DON'T EVEN LIKE OREOS!" sort of sweet. It's sickening, and best in small doses, and I still feel like I need an internal cleanse after spreading the reading this book over several days. The good thing about it is that this book isn't the sugar-free type of gummy bears, so there were no anal explosions. It wasn't the worst contemporary I've ever read, but this book was tremendously annoying and I simply do not understand the hype. I know many of people enjoyed it, and I can see why. Anna is the sort of character that grows on you, much like mildew, or herpes. Once you get used to having it, it doesn't really bother you much anymore.

I'm not opposed to romance. I love romance, but I read this book hoping to be swept away by a romance. Instead, I was sucked into a whirlwind of idiocy.

Oh, the Stupidity!!:

The only French word I know is oui, which means “yes,” and only recently did I learn it’s spelled o-u-i and not w-e-e.

People like Anna Oliphant is the reason why everyone hates Americans. Anna is 17, and she is a moron. She is the epitome of the stupid, ignorant, egocentric American. For fuck's sakes, she thinks there are motherfucking mimes on every fucking corner in France. She thinks that people go watch mimes as an everyday pastime!

I’m going to be sick. I’m going to vomit that weird eggplant tapenade I had for dinner, and everyone wil hear, and no one will invite me to watch the mimes escape from their invisible boxes, or whatever it is people do here in their spare time.

I'm sorry, but I'm inclined to judge anyone who doesn't know that oui is spelled o-u-i and not w-e-e. It's one of those foreign words that isn't even fucking foreign because it's so fucking common. Oui is yes in French. Si is no in Spanish. It's one of those words that's so fucking commonly used that you have to be a complete birdbrain not to know!

Anna is terrified of anything foreign, although to me, France really isn't that foreign or exotic, but I didn't grow up in Atlanta. Is Atlanta really that ass-fucking backward? Is Atlanta really completely isolated from the rest of the world, despite being one of the biggest cities in the US (Anna's words). Do they not have paninis in Atlanta?

“Where have you been all my life?” I ask the beautiful panini. “How is it possible I’ve never had a sandwich like this before?”

Not only is she ignorant, she has no survival skills. Anna is in Paris, attending a school for Americans. Fucking everyone speaks English, the French teachers speak English. Anna is terrified of getting food in the cafeteria and avoids the cafeteria for weeks because she doesn't know how to order food.

Let me tell you a brilliant way of ordering food, in any language. You smile, you make eye contact at the desired food, you point, you nod. It's motherfucking universal.

I hate to say it, but if you're a pretty girl, you can get anyone's help (most likely a guy, but often another girl, too) just by looking cute and helpless and tilting your head at an angle (guilty as charged). It ain't feminist, but it works when one is desperate, and the fact that Anna doesn't have the fucking common sense to do this instead of hiding in her room for weeks like a motherfucking pussy doesn't bring her up in my estimation. I'm not judging Anna for being shy. Anna is not shy. I was a shy, shy teenager. Anna is incompetent. There is a difference between incompetency and shyness.

After weeks and weeks of going to classes, of learning French...Anna doesn't know how to fucking spell "please" in French.

Mer is next in line, and I transcribe her speech phonetically.

Oon ploss see voo play.

That's suppsed to be une place, s'il vous plaît.

Her impression of Paris is one with like, blah blah Marie Antoinette and that really short dude, like, I think his name is Napoleon? You know, like, the one on the horse in that painting by that dude? And oh my god, the Moulin Rouge, and that cute little movie with the little girl in the yellow thingy! Madeline!

And this is a chick who wants to be a film critic when she grows up.

My dream is to study film theory in California. I want to be our nation’s greatest female film critic.

Although judging from the way she thinks, I think she's more suited to a career writing for the tabloids, the type with the sort of "PRESIDENT OBAMA CAUGHT IN INTERPLANETARY ORGY ALONG WITH PUTIN AND MERKEL" headline rather than as a film critic.

I wonder if Matt is a better kisser now that he has someone more experienced to practice on. He was probably a bad kisser because of me.

Oh, no.

I’m a bad kisser. I am, I must be.

Someday I’ll be awarded a statue shaped like a pair of lips, and it’ll be engraved with the words WORLD’S WORST KISSER.And Matt will give a speech about how he only dated me because he was desperate, but I didn’t put out, so I was a waste of time because Cherrie Milliken liked him all along and she totally puts out.

Oh God. Does Toph think I’m a bad kisser?

Anna, Anna, ANNA!!!!!: So beautiful without knowing it!! So perfect! So adorably fucking clumsy! She even looks gorgeous when she falls flat on her fucking face!

"You’re beautiful.”

I trip and fall down on the sidewalk.

I look away as he takes my hand and helps me up. “I’m fine. Fine!” I say, brushing the grit from my palms. Oh my God, I AM a freak.

“You’ve seen the way men look at you, right?” he continues.

“If they’re looking, it’s because I keep making a fool of myself.”

I've seen this before. And it ain't cute. Spare me the whole adorkable thing. I don't like Zooey Deschanel, and I don't like Anna. It just looks like she's trying too fucking hard, and the cute but oh-so-clumsy trope is just so fucking overplayed right now. I wash my hands of it.

It's not blatant, but the relationships between the girls in this book are meant to portray Anna as the good one, the best one, the most adorakablest girly girl in the whole wide fucking world. Rashmi is "Rash." Cute. I don't think so. Mer is just a little chubby. Volleyball player chubby, but it's ok ^_^; Amanda the slut, Amanda the bitch. And Anna. Anna is just so good because you know, she feels really bad that Etienne likes her, so she does everything she can to make Mer not jealous. It's not Mer's fault that she's not good enough for Etienne! And boy, Saint Anna keeps reminding us that she's a good person!

And poor Ellie. Poor Ellie, Etienne's girlfriend. But surely, it's ok for Etienne to cheat on Ellie with Anna if she loos like a slut, right?

Slutty nurse. I don’t believe it. Tiny white button-up dress, red crosses across the nipples. Cleavage city.

CHEATING IS OK IF YOUR GIRLFRIEND IS A BITCH: That's the message that this book sends. Oh, that Ellie. That stupid, stuck up Ellie. Ellie who thinks she is better than everyone else. Surely it's fine if Etienne seeks comfort elsewhere if his girlfriend is a cold fish, a stuck up snot, right? No. I don't fucking think so. How about you break up with her FIRST? Just because a girl is a jerk doesn't mean she deserves to be cheated on. I do not appreciate the way this book sends the message that it's morally acceptable to cheat on a girlfriend who neglects you! But it's morally acceptable to cheat on her if you feeeeeeeeeeeeel bad about it, right? Fuck this shit.

THE CHEATING: And yes, it is cheating. What do you call this?

"I said you were beautiful. I slept in your bed!”
“You never made a move! You had a girlfriend!”
“No matter what a terrible boyfriend I was, I wouldn’t actually cheat on her. But I thought you’d know. With me being there, I thought you’d know.”

Ok. Etienne has a girlfriend, Ellie. Etienne holds hands with Anna. He is still with Ellie.

It’s nice holding hands. Comfortable.

I wish friends held hands more often, like the children I see on the streets sometimes. I’m not sure why we have to grow up and get embarrassed about it.

You know why? Because you wouldn't like it if Etienne held hands with another girl if he was dating YOU. Fucking hypocrite.

Friends don't sleep in each other's beds.

I mean I didn’t SLEEP sleep with him. Obviously. But I slept with him.

I slept with a boy! I burrow back down into my sheets and grin.

And that boy has a girlfriend. And then you do it again. While he still has a girlfriend. While you have an almost-boyfriend.

You make eye contact and blush at each other in a theatre. While he has a girlfriend.

You kiss each other. While he has a girlfriend. While you have an almost-boyfriend.

You flirt with each other. While he has a girlfriend. While you have an almost-boyfriend.

I don't see this relationship lasting very long.